Printing the OER World Map: The OER Atlas

Last week, during the OERde 16 Festival, we published the first Version of the OER Atlas. The OERde 16 Festival was a major OER event, organized by Jöran und Konsorten and oncampus, which took place in Berlin (28th February – 1st March). The festival consisted out of several events, starting with a two day barcamp, followed by a one day expert forum, which aimed at connecting OER activists with OER policymakers. The glamorous highlight of the festival was the OER-Award, which recognized established OER initiatives as well as promising newcomers.

The OER World Map project was one of several partners of the festival and jointly responsible for the generation of the OER Atlas, a printed book with 102 pages, which documents OER activities from Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Though a printed book might seem somewhat anachronistic, we assumed that there are many people – especially within the field of policy making – who still prefer print.

The Atlas includes a summary of the latest OECD report by Dominic Orr, an statistical overview of the collected data as well as detailed information for more than 130 entries.

Producing the OER Atlas turned out to offer many learning opportunities since collecting data for a complete country allowed us to test many ideas prior to their implementation in the World Map platform. Two of the most important lessons learned are:

  1. Our assumption that synchronising data collection for the OER World Map with major OER events was a reasonable thing to do turned out to be true.
  2. It is possible (with a reasonable amount of work) to collect at least big parts of the relevant data for a medium sized country like Germany.

The first version was generated manually. We believe that it would be a great feature for the OER World Map to provide printed reports on the state of the OER movement in every country of the world pressing just one button. If and when we will develop this feature is not yet clear. But it would be very helpful to see other countries start collecting OER related material using the OER World Map in a systematic way. In case you are planning to do something like this, please let us know – we are very happy to share our experiences.


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